Slowly Settling In

Almost one week has passed since I arrived in Finland. PB and I were busy with bureaucracy so far. Now we’re both known to the police and I’m registered at Jyväskylä University and ready to start taking courses. We’re still waiting for a bank account (obviously our credit history has to be checked). Also, we are not yet able to get a phone contract, as we don’t have a social security nor tax number. Which means I won’t get a smartphone for some time longer.

Our home is still a mess and we’re living surounded by boxes. On Saturday we went to lay around a bit. The result was that we bought a bed that will be delivered in about 2 weeks. Up ’till then we sleep in the guest room on the guest bed. The room is very small, so that when the bed is opened to queen bed size, you can sit on the bed and work on the desk:

Guest Room – Currently Master Bedroom / Office / TV Room

However, the kitchen (most important room in any house) is almost done. Here we have a lot of storage space, so It’s easier to keep organised.

Kitchen – Almost Tidy

As you can see one of the cabinet doors is broken. It will be fixed by the owner company soon, I hope. Behind that door is the trash organisation system: four plastic containers to separate your garbage. The garbage deposit is in a shed in the yard, so you don’t have to wait for a specific day to get rid of it.

Speaking of the yard: it’s full of berry bushes! PB already went and picked redcurrants and blackcurrants with which I made a cake. But that’s for next post.

We invited one of our neighbours with his kids to eat some of the cake. Here’s what they found our living / dining room to be looking like:

Living / Dining Room – Also Known As Boxland

In the background the lodgia is visible. This might easily be our favourite room. This s partly due to the fact that it’s one of the few rooms with a lamp in it. Next Saturday we will probably go lamp shopping.

The other rooms (master bedroom, entrance and bathroom/sauna) look pretty much the same as the rest of the apartment, so I’ll spare you the pictures. Hopefully next week we’ll be completely unpacked, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

Anyway, this was the little apartment tour one week after my move. More to follow.

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Some More Bye Bye Food

By popular demand IRL, I’m putting up these two recipes. Again, they are very easy and fast(ish) to make. The first one is a dish that helped win over my PB’s heart:

Hummus!

This truly is easy and fast, with very good results. It’s slightly adapted from a recipe I found on the recipe database of Betty Bossi.

Ingredients for a smallish bowl
1 can chickpeas (ca. 450g), drained, 3/4 of the liquid saved
1 tablespoon tahini (sesame paste)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Cumin powder to taste
1 clove of garlic
Salt

Preparation
Place all the ingredients in a blender, blend well. A stick blender works best.

The next one was an extension of the winning over of PB:

Babaganush / Mutabal

So, I know this as babaganush, but in the cookbook I got this recipe from it’s called mutabal. Sometimes it’s also known as aubergine / eggplant caviar. It’s not as fast as the hummus above, but equally easy.

Ingredients for a smallish bowl
1 big aubergine / eggplant (ca. 500g)
1 small clove garlic, squeezed
4 tablespoons (ca. 70g) sesame butter (or tahini)
150g natural yoghurt (optional)
Juice of 1/2 lemon or lime
Salt
Cumin powder to taste

Preparation
Heat oven to 230°C. Cut the aubergine / eggplant in half lengthwise, place in the oven (cut side facing up) for about 45 minutes (until peel is brown / black). Scoop the flesh with a sharp spoon into a blender. Blend well with the other ingredients. A stick blender works best.

The cookbook I got this from is “Safran & Kardamoom” by Rita Henss. It contains beautiful photos and graphics. I got it as a birthday present in 2009, and it’s been on display on my bookshelf ever since. Thanks, Heidi, for the great present!

Saying Goodbye With Sweets

So in the last few weeks I’ve had alot of goodbye parties, both at home and at work. Of course I tried to make sweet stuff, because I love baking and making sweets. But, because I’m a bit stressed about the Move, I didn’t want to do too elaborate things. So for most of the parties I made my favourite sweet treats. Here are pictures of two of them:

15 Minutes Lemon Meringue Pies from The Stone Soup

The nice thing about these is that they seem very elaborate, but in reality are extremely easy and fast to make. The full recipe can be found over at The Stone Soup. The author of the blog has a lot of nice and simple recipes, so it’s definitely worth a visit.

Marbled Brownies – before they’re cut

All right, I admit, these are not that fast and easy to make. I made them so many times, though, that I don’t consider them to be difficult anymore. Also, they helped me get a room in a shared flat once, so whenever I make them I remember that year I lived with “my two boys”, so it’s definitely worth the time for me. I already packed the cookbooks, so the recipe will follow in a few weeks after I unpacked.

So, enough procrastination: back to packing!